“Paint-A-Pumpkin” Lets Students Celebrate Fall, Make Friends Safely

By Kaleigh Cortez, Staff Writer-

The Office of Student and Family Engagement kicked off their third annual Paint-A-Pumpkin event on Oct. 16 with in-person and virtual formats.

Students who reserved spots for the event in either format received a mini pumpkin, a paintbrush and three paint colors of their choosing to decorate their pumpkins.

Assistant Director for the Office of Student and Family Engagement, Laura Petrus said she had 15 students request supplies to be mailed to them in their hometown and had 60 students total request supplies to participate in the virtual event.

“We have a lot of students who aren’t on campus,” Petrus said. “We want to make sure that those students feel engaged and feel a part of our community because they are, no matter where they are.”

Both in-person sessions held in the University Center’s Chattanooga Room had a maximum capacity of 30 attendees to maintain a safe distance between students. Each session almost reached the limit of students who could attend.

Taylor Murray, a freshman from Murfreesboro, attended the event with another freshman friend to meet new people safely despite the pandemic.

“I’m definitely glad there are in-person events,” Murray said. “It’s an opportunity for students to get together and still enjoy their time.”

All participants were required to wear masks and social distance from other students in compliance with guidelines put forth by the university.

“I definitely think it’s so safe because we’re all spread out and we’re having a good time,” Murray said.

The Office of Student and Family Engagement will be hosting more events for homecoming this week.

Students can expect to see a virtual announcement of the homecoming court, an in-person and virtual bingo night, in-person button making, a game day watch party, a virtual lip-sync battle and more. A full list of homecoming events can be found here.

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